Daily Court Digest: Major environment orders (November 25, 2022)

Down To Earth brings you the top environmental cases heard in the Supreme Court, the high courts and the National Green Tribunal

By DTE Staff
Published: Monday 28 November 2022
Down To Earth brings you top environmental cases heard in Supreme Court, high courts & National Green Tribunal

Adi Ganga pollution

Abating pollution in the channel Adi Ganga flowing through Kolkata, West Bengal, requires implementation and completion of several projects, noted the National Green Tribunal (NGT), eastern zone Bench of Kolkata. 

The channel is also called Tolly’s Nullah. The NGT had formed a committee to look the rejuvenation of Adi Ganga.

The court, November 23, 2022 directed the West Bengal Pollution Control Board (WBPCB) to ensure implementation of the recommendations given in the committee report by the various authorities. A report is to be submitted to the NGT before January 9, 2023.

The report filed on behalf of WBPCB, November 21, 2022, said several projects need to be completed by the Metro Rail Authority, Kolkata Municipal Corporation, West Bengal Housing Infrastructure Development Corporation, Kolkata Police and Rajpur Sonarpur Municipality.

The revised proposal of Tolly’s Nullah rejuvenation should be approved by National Mission for Clean Ganga, the panel recommended. 

Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) and Rajpur Sonarpur Municipality should put up nets above man-height on all the bridges across the Adi Ganga to stop disposal of garbage or plastics into the river, it further said. 

Kolkata police should also take action to remove all khatals (cowsheds) and piggeries from the banks of Adi Ganga at the earliest, it also recommended. The police should take measures to ensure that no encroachment takes place on the banks of Adi Ganga.

The Adi Ganga is the original channel of Ganga river flowing through Kolkata, has long been converted into a drain by default, Down To Earth had earlier reported. 

An agency of the West Bengal government is planning to turn part of the tidal river into a ‘drain’ by design, stated another DTE report, April 19, 2022. 

Waste management in West Bengal

The West Bengal government has deposited Rs 3,500 crore in two accounts for management of solid waste, said a report filed by ther West Bengal chief secretary, November 24, 2022. 

The Urban Development and Municipal Affairs Department has created two separate accounts under the scheme ‘Solid waste management mission’ for restoration measures, including preventing discharge of untreated sewage and solid waste treatment.

The NGT, September 1, 2022 had directed the state to pay compensation for past violations of solid waste and liquid waste norms. The amount of compensation was fixed at Rs 2 crore per million litres per day.

Encroachment of tanks and ponds in Hyderabad 

Encroachment within buffer zones of lakes and other waterbodies have been removed in Hyderabad and neighbouring areas, a report by North Tank division of the Telangana government submitted to the NGT. 

Some of the encroachments could not be removed due to pending litigations and cases filed by the landlords, it further said. Lake protection works are stalled in that area because of these cases. 

Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation has sanctioned funds for Rs 94.17 crore for erection of chain link fencing around 63 lakes for protection of lake boundaries. The fencing work is around 70 per cent completed, the report said. 

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